This post breaks socializing down into its major components, as defined by their psychological purposes and societal functions.
Smalltalk is the exchange of emotions for its own sake, and typically revolves around the topics that interest ordinary people: in-group gossip, sports, celebrities, entertainment, food, and intoxicants. Signalling is Framing for the purpose of social positioning, and can be broken down into virtue signalling, sociosexual status signalling, social class signalling, and political identity signalling. Sperging is the exchange of information for its own sake, typically revolves around random esoterica, and is marked by spontaneous, lengthy soliloquy.
A person heavily predisposed to one sort of socializing may engage in another style in service of their primary social style. For instance, a sociosexual Gamma will often sperg for the purpose of signalling. Here are some examples of the other five possible pairings:
-A gamer will often sperg for the purpose of small talk. E.g. “What are your top five favorite animes?”
-A PUA blog commenter on the spectrum will often signal for the purpose of sperging. E.g. “I negged fifty girls yesterday because sarging is Alpha and I am an Alpha, therefore I sarge.”
-A clueless striver (alternatively, a Neurotic) will often signal for the purpose of small talk. E.g. “Have you seen Hamilton yet? It was. So. Amazing!”
-A programmer will often small talk for the purpose of sperging. E.g. “I am talking to you because networking is important for professional success, which is an important idea that I learned from this book that you definitely should read.” *Hands book to victim, unsolicited.*
-A socialite will often small talk for the purpose of signalling. E.g. “I had a burger at that new place, right? Oh my God, man.” (For some reason this particular phrasing is very among Alpha males: “I ate X. Oh my God.” Seriously, listen for it.)
I’d advise using this to rank people as low, mid, and high on each of these axes. For example, Koanic is high on sperging, mid on signalling, and low on smalltalk.